It was the summer of 2007 when a letter in a brown envelope and 23 Kenyan stamps was delivered to me. As I read the letter, a picture formed in my mind of a lonely man of God in the poverty-stricken countryside of Kenya praying and serving his village in the Name of Jesus.
Below is an excerpt from the letter contained in that brown envelope:
"Kager Medical Ambassadors Mission Dispensary provides HEALTHCARE AND TREATMENT SERVICES to the people of the remote western Nyanza Province in Kenya. The Dispensary is the only one amidst two government owned health facilities which are 30 and 24 kilometers away. The nearest centre to get reliable transportation is 10 km away. The only available means of transportation to this location is bicycle.
The Dispensary has 4 staff (director, senior nurse and two assistants) and is overwhelmed with serious accidents and illnesses requiring lab testing, x-ray, vaccination, medication, hospital care and emergency services. It has been difficult to handle most of these demands created by these situations due to the lack of TRANSPORTATION EMPOWERMENT. In some cases, this has resulted in people dying.
The following are real life stories we have seen at Kager:
A patient who developed a problem (which was later diagnosed as food poisoning) died while being referred to one of the district hospitals from our facility at night. There was no means of transport and we had to push him on the back of a bicycle to the hospital that was 24 km away.
A woman who was giving birth in the village bled to death. It was night time and we were not able to transport her to the hospital
A man who was being treated in our facility became worse. He was hand carried to the district hospital and died on the way
Apart from reaching out to the physical needs of the community, the Dispensary partners with the local church in EVANGELISM. We reach out to the community with the Word of God by going out for outreaches and this has also been greatly hard due to the lack of transportation.
It is in these regards that Kager Medical Ambassadors Mission Dispensary would like to appeal to your organization for Basic Utility Vehicles to enable us to solve and reach out to the problems. A single vehicle can make us more effective in our mission of providing quality services to its vulnerable community while fulfilling the GREAT COMMISSION.
It is my strong conviction that with the availability of transport empowerment, we will be able to reduce mortality rate among children under five years of age, assist women with difficult delivery cases, we will have our purchases always on time, and be able to reach out to collect serious casees from the villages and be effective messengers of our Lord Jesus Christ.
It is with respect that I want to make a strong and earnest appeal for you to consider our request. May the Lord richly uphold you and continue prosper and stir up your vision and compassion for the people of God.
For close to six months I carried that letter in my briefcase, only thinking of it occassionally. Then one morning in December as I was reading through the book of Isaiah, I read these words in Chapter 58, verses 6-9:
Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry and
to provide the poor wanderer with shelter –
when you see the naked, to clothe him, and to not
turn away from your own flesh and blood?
Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing with quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.
Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say:
HERE AM I.”
It was when I read these words that I fully understood why the letter had been delivered to me — God wanted me to be the “Here Am I” answer for the prayers of Kager village.
From that day on, the village of Kager has been on my heart and I know that this is an important part of my journey with God. God is teaching me how He answers prayers — and that I am to use my gifts, resources and connections to answer the prayers for help from a single village in rural western Kenya.
Founder, Jubilee Village Project